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Hurricanes won't reveal starting goalie for Game 3 against Bruins

Carolina '100 percent on board' with either Mrazek or McElhinney getting call

by Dan Rosen @drosennhl / NHL.com Senior Writer

RALEIGH, N.C. -- The Carolina Hurricanes will not say whether Petr Mrazek or Curtis McElhinney will be the starting goalie in Game 3 of the Eastern Conference Final against the Boston Bruins at PNC Arena on Tuesday (8 p.m. ET; NBCSN, CBC, SN, TVAS).

Coach Rod Brind'Amour said Tuesday that a decision had been made, but he was not going to tell anyone. 

"I can't be that guy that does that, right? I know who we're starting, but I guess you'll have to wait and see. Sorry," Brind'Amour said.

Carolina trails the best-of-7 series 2-0.

The Hurricanes could stick with Mrazek, who started Games 1 and 2 at Boston and allowed 10 goals on 52 shots, losing both. They could also change to McElhinney, who went 3-0 with a 1.56 goals-against average and .947 save percentage against the New York Islanders in the second round after relieving the injured Mrazek in Game 2.

 

[RELATED: Complete Bruins vs. Hurricanes series coverage]

It was the second straight day Brind'Amour played coy with what he termed "an easy decision.

"I know we talk about it a lot, and I know it would be easy if I just said, 'Here is who we're starting,' but we're confident in any way we go. Do we make a change? We might. But that might be for different reasons than you guys think. We'll know tomorrow."

Mrazek said his confidence isn't shaken after allowing six goals on 25 shots in a 6-2 loss in Game 2 on Sunday. 

"It's just one game and it's the playoffs, so you play for the win," Mrazek said Monday. "Sometimes when you lose 1-0 it bothers you more than when you lose 6-2."

Mrazek also allowed six goals on 28 shots in a 6-0 loss to the Washington Capitals in Game 5 of the first round. He responded by giving up five goals on 62 shots to win Games 6 and 7. He then had a 31-save shutout in a 1-0 victory against the Islanders in Game 1.

"Anytime you have a tough game where you kind of get shelled a little bit, the mentality is you want to bounce back in the next one," McElhinney said. "[Petr] is a competitive guy. You can see that in the way he plays and the emotion he shows on the ice. If anything, he just wants to get back out there."

McElhinney, though, has also proven he's capable of winning in the Stanley Cup Playoffs. He made 17 saves after replacing Mrazek in Game 2 against the Islanders and then allowed four goals on 58 shots to win Games 3 and 4 to complete the four-game sweep.

"We're 100 percent on board with anybody that goes in the hockey nets," Hurricanes forward and captain Justin Williams said Monday. "I have zero qualms about anybody going in. Whoever is going to go in is going to do a great job and we're going to have a great game."

NHL.com staff writer Tom Gulitti contributed to this report

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